Twin Cities by Jose Pimienta has received a starred review from Kirkus, which called the middle-grade graphic novel “transcendently good.”

“Twelve-year-old twins forge individual paths—and begin to lead diverging lives—at separate schools along the Calexico-Mexicali border. 

Sixth grade is officially over. For Teresa and Fernando, summer vacation zips by in a series of frolics and chores, perhaps their last season as an inseparable pair. Then the first day of seventh grade arrives. Teresa prepares herself early to cross the border into Calexico to attend an American middle school; Fernando remains behind in Mexicali to continue school in their town. Different school beginnings greet each sibling. Without his sister (and two best friends, who are at Teresa’s school), Fernando spends his time alone, counting down the minutes until school ends. Teresa, meanwhile, finds new peers and seems right at home in her new American school. Those initial steps prove only temporary. In an ingenious use of panel sets to separate each twin’s journey on the page, Pimienta masterfully builds the tension and pressure between Fernando and Teresa, together at home and apart at school. Wandering off one day, Fernando befriends an older student who gradually exerts his considerable influence and introduces him to weed. High academic stress and lofty parental expectations chisel away at Teresa, and her initial enthusiasm falters slightly under the weight of her new reality. Sibling squabbles and confrontations—captured in all their raw nuance thanks to the author’s deft writing and scrappy artwork—build to a wonderful breakthrough point. 

Transcendently good. (author’s note, sketches, map, supplemental note) (Graphic fiction. 8-12)” -Kirkus Reviews

TWIN CITIES by Jose Pimienta will be publishing from Penguin Random House on July 12, 2022.

Jose is represented by Elizabeth Bennett.